23 May 2016

A Playlist Of Haunting, Beautiful Acoustic Songs To Prove It Ain't Just Wonderwall 'Round The Campfire

There is a well-known phenomenon that has swept over the chino clad nation. It's around every corner and engraved in every post code, sweeping our once great country like a plague. This kind of atrocity is committed in the once innocent names of singalongs and good vibes... man, and I advise you, dear reader, to steer well clear. For campfires are off limits. House parties aren't safe either. Festivals might just be worth the risk but please know that the risk is very, very real. Because when the moon sits in the night sky like a Johnny Borrell solo record in a bargain bucket, and a dozen empty cans echo and roll along the floor: the acoustic guitar is drawn. As if he's conquered Excalibur itself, the flimsy six-string is brandished and flaunted. It doesn't matter that he only knows four and a half chords, two Nirvana songs, and the intro to Mr Brightside. He's tipsy, confident and knows exactly what the people have been missing. They've been missing some pissed up egotist mumbling and fumbling their way around a 90's classic! And thus the acoustic guitar is ruined. Forever. You'll never get to hear Don't Look Back In Anger again without picturing an obnoxious teen singing oh so passionately with his eyes forced closed as if he's Thom fucking Yorke.

I've put this collection together to try and put some of the fun back into the acoustic guitar, to wipe the slate clean from those indie boys in indie jeans picking through indie tunes at an indie disco. After spending far too many hours/days/years gleefully researching through the depths of YouTube, I have come to the conclusion that all of these performances are nothing short of beautiful. That's the potential of our once holy instrument, it can turn the most generic and thoughtless song into something really special. For example, I've included a version of Slide Away by Oasis, a song that is categorically average on the record but once Noel Gallagher is given an acoustic and a stadium of fans to entertain it becomes a different animal entirely. It's about time we reclaimed the acoustic guitar back from the grubby hands of karaoke superstars and give it a revival about a thousand times more exciting than the new Stone Roses drivel. Enjoy the playlist.

Thom Yorke - Street Spirit (1995)

Fat White Family - Hits Hits Hits (2015)

The Smiths - Back To The Old House (1983)

Noel Gallagher - Slide Away (1998)

Alex Turner - Only You Know (2009)

Father John Misty - Heart Shaped Box (2015)

Sufjan Stevens - Chicago (2009)

Diiv - Human (2013)

Jeff Mangum (Neutral Milk Hotel) - Two Headed Boy Pt 2 (2001)

Words: Dr Ruben Clark